The Neotron Pico is a full micro-ATX size motherboard using a low-cost Raspberry Pi Pico. It includes expansion slots so that you can easily design and add your own peripherals.
The Raspberry Pi Pico is the core of the Neotron Pico. It uses PIO state machines to generate 12-bit Super VGA video, and digital 16 bit 48 kHz stereo audio. It also has both I²C and SPI buses. SPI chip selects and IRQs are handled by an SPI-to-GPIO expander. This provides eight chip-selects and eight IRQs, to support up to eight expansion slots or peripherals. The eight chip-selects are gated with a tri-state bus transceiver, allowing the Pico to talk to either the I/O expander, or the selected expansion slot.
The board has an SD Card fitted in the ‘Slot 1’ position, and the Board Management Controller in the ‘Slot 0’ position, leaving ‘Slot 2’ through to ‘Slot 7’ available for expansion. Each expansion slot has both I²C and SPI, along with unique chip-select and IRQ signals.
The Neotron Pico is designed to run the Neotron OS – a CP/M or MS-DOS alike OS written in Rust. But, being open-hardware, you can program your Neotron Pico to do pretty much anything.
The project is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Adafruit publishes a wide range of writing and video content, including interviews and reporting on the maker market and the wider technology world. Our standards page is intended as a guide to best practices that Adafruit uses, as well as an outline of the ethical standards Adafruit aspires to. While Adafruit is not an independent journalistic institution, Adafruit strives to be a fair, informative, and positive voice within the community – check it out here: adafruit.com/editorialstandards
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.